China Day Won
I arrived last night, met up with Mag and Tony at the airport and journeyed from Hong Kong into China. Arrived, checked in and we went to the local for some dinner. Chinese food of course!
My boss is here today only, but he's doing work in another room so I can cruise along without interruption.
I was doing a search online with Blingo and voila ---
I won a movie ticket! How Fun! It'll show up in my mailbox some time in the next 2 months.
Besides that it's just been prepwork all day! Let's see what tomorrow brings!
Cheers from China!!
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
China Day Won
Sunday, August 20, 2006
Have I said how much I love the blinds in my room? Their addition warmed up the entire room! I'm so glad Dan hung them for me. He did a wonderful job!
I was packed and ready to go when I awoke this morning. So we headed to one of my favorite places for breakfast! The Silver Moon Bakery - YUM! We sat outside in the sun in their seasonal cafe and enjoyed a leisurely breakfast. Weekday mornings the line can be long for take away service, but the wait is worth it! The price is average for NYC, but the taste is well above average! I recommend the chocolate croissants, and brioche and their granola if you are sitting in the cafe (that is what I had in fact!)
When colder weather hits they have a Capella groups come sing from time to time and bread making classes are offered as well.
Around the holidays they always have extra items fit for that holiday.
For a special treat, try their fruit tarts (well worth the price!) and don't forget to pick up a loaf or two of the fresh bread. The raisin nut bread makes great french toast.
Why I like them the best? They are closed on major holidays so even their employees get to spend them NOT at work! This also means plan ahead!
Off to Newark I go! Cheers!
Saturday, August 19, 2006
Bouncy Trouncy Bouncy Trouncy
fun fun fun fun fuuuun!!!!
That's how today felt...for the most part!
The day began with my laundry being delivered (wash and folded) so that I could pack. One of the perks about living in NYC -- laundry service!!!
Then Carina came by and I opened my birthday gift from her. The gave me a kitchen scale that measures in grams and pounds. Yippee! My baking and my knitting will benefit!!! Thank you Carina!!! 100x Thank you!!!
Next Dan and I dashed down to Chelsea for lunch at the Empire Diner with my cousin Dean who's here from LA for a wedding and visit. (He lived in Brooklyn for a number of years. What can I say about the Empire Diner? This wasn't my first meal there. It's over on 10th Avenue and 22nd street...not my usual haunt. Thankfully the food is always YUMMY! It's comfort food. As the menu says "yes, everything is good." The cold drinks (from soda & lemonade to iced coffee/tea) are served in personal carafes, and the plates arrive over flowing. Dean (photod below -- in a rare photo where he isn't smiling or with a camera attached to his face...he's a budding photographer, and yes - I love his shirt!!) had an omelet which he finished - so I assume it was good. Dan tried the BBQ chicken and I dove into the open face Chili Burger, both shown above. Yum! (I've been on a real burger kick lately!) The Sweet potato fries are good as are the thick sliced potato "chips". We sat outside, but inside they often have a piano player...which is amazing because it's tiny in there!
After lunch we popped over to Restoration Hardware to pick up the bar so my tapestry could be hung. I was so excited! My friends brought this tapestry back from Egypt ages ago and I've been deciding where to hang it. Upon arrival at home we opened the box (we'd check the color in the store) and voila -- a piece was missing so it couldn't be hung. Blah. It'll have to be exchanged...but they don't carry this one in the store so it'll have to be ordered and shipped. Blah again!
Since it was my last night on US soil we decided on a nice meal in and I brought out a 1999 Barolo I'd been saving for a special occasion. Uncorked it, decanted it... Blah - it was CORKED!!! How very very sad!!! Good thing we'd each had a nice glass while waiting at Meridiana for our take out.
So, Meridiana...Their menu is fairly standard Italian fare. Pasta with various sauces (pesto and bolognese I've tried are good), entrees ( a decent chicken and sausage) and apps (fried calamari and beef carpaccio.) Everything is good as you'd expect. DO try the specials where the offerings by the chef rotate with the seasons. We tried the rabbit - Yum! The Caprese Salad had some wonderful mozz and vine ripe tomato, again - Yum! Sadly the fresh fava beans and shrimp...the beans were a bit over cooked. DO try a glass of their Prosecco or Barbaro -- both of which we enjoyed.
We popped in Match Point and relaxed. I'd seen it in the theatre and liked it again!
Off to China tomorrow! See you there!
Friday, August 18, 2006
Long day - end of week - last day before trip. My Assistant is all set for next week. I've left her some fun stuff!
Had a quick trip to the Doc's today for this lingering cough. He gave me some antibiotics to start if it doesn't get better in a few days. China is NOT the place to decide I need a doctor, so I'll have them with me.
After work Dan and I grabbed a quick bite and then saw The Illusionist down at the Angelika. We arrived about 35 minutes (or more) before the showing and the line snaked around the first floor and was heading nearly our the door!! That's what we get for going opening night!
I really enjoyed The Illusionist. Found it very entertaining. I recommend it on the big screen too so go and enjoy!
Busy day tomorrow. a friend stopping by, brunch with my cousin who's here from LA and errands to run. Cheers!
Thursday, August 17, 2006
Blind to it!
Work is fine. Just prepping for the trip.
In other news -
After nearly hurting myself getting the box in from the hallway when I arrived home last night, I realized that it was my new BLINDS for my bedroom!! YIPPEE!!!
After work Dan came over, armed with drill ( mine died) and hung the blinds! What a difference!! Now we need to go get a towel bar to hang the tapestry and I have to sort through the crap that has accumulated in my BR. The apartment is starting to shape up (damn I have too much stuff!!!)
After the blinds were up I treated us to a yummy Thai take-out dinner from the Lime Leaf. We had the Chicken Curry Puffs, Spring Rolls (shown left), Shrimp Pad Thai along with a Thai Curry. They even included the shrimp chips and peanut dipping sauce that you'd enjoy while dining in. If you're in the neighborhood and decide to dine in, don't pass up their Thai coffee or tea. During warm weather they have outdoor cafe seating. Value for price is quite good!
Bed time! Tomorrow's the last office day before my trip!
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
What can you say about Wednesday?
Today I brought my asst to the Chinese Consulate to learn the ropes on how to get a China Visa.
It's simple, but it helps to be walked through the process once.
Besides that we spent the day getting ready for the whirlwind trip ahead!
After the long day I dashed downtown on the bus to meet Dan for a movie.
We saw Casa de Areia (House of Sand) from Brazil (spoken in Portugese but subtitled in English.) It was quite beautiful...the views of the Brazillian dessert!! WOW!!... and I found it emotional at times, but dragged in parts too. The two main actresses did a good job I think. They each played multiple parts convincingly.
After the film we supped late at Greek Village Grill near Union Square. I had a wonderful plate of fresh grilled octopus and Dan had the red snapper, also grilled to perfection (although it was an entire snapper -- HUGE!!) I reccomend the grilled veggies over the steamed as a side, and I reccomend asking them to hold the eggplant. It wasn't prepared well and was all too bitter.
That said, the meal was Yum!! Some of the best Greek cuisine I've had in NYC. I'll go back!!
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
The Girls are Back in Town
I can't believe how good I felt when I woke this morning! Something tells me that I need to go away to sunny beach strewn islands more often!! (Sounds good right??)
The work day was spent playing a small amount of catch up (not much as my asst is GREAT!!) and putting the final plans into work for my coming trip to China.
After work I dashed home to change and grab Michelle's silly little something that I'd gotten her for her birthday and hopped the subway downtown to meet her for dinner. She'd made a reservation for us at a new restaurant down on 10th Ave called Earth NYC so we could celebrate my birthday before we both left town for work trips. (Yes, she's fab...that's her at left!)
Upon arrival I found not only Michelle, but Sandi and Allegra too! Allegra (right) was very sly...she'd asked me for a drink after work and was "bummed" when I told her I was already booked having dinner with Michelle. I was very surprised and even more touched! I adore my friends and just don't get as much time with them as I wish I could. We all have such busy careers and our schedules are a true mess! Sadly because I didn't know that Sandi (below with Michelle) was going to be there I didn't bring her gift along! That just means we have to get together after our first round of trips before we all pop off to travel again!
So - Earth NYC for those of you who want a restaurant review... is YUM!
Yes, I'll elaborate!
We got many-a-dish and shared them all. We chose NOT to get any of the seafood as we didn't want any chance of our dear Allegra (even though she encouraged us to) to have an allergic reaction. So I won't comment on the seafood this time.
The theme of the restaurant is to bring together the many flavours of Southeast Asia in restaurant/lounge atmosphere. The candle wall (lit with over 130 candles) is a nice touch. Looks like the place turns into quite a party on Friday and Saturday nights (see their website.)
Back to the food!!! We started with Cha Gio [Vietnam] -- Crispy vegetable spring rolls served with sweet chilli sauce, Lollipops [India] -- Chicken wings sautÃ©ed in sweet n spicy sauce and Bhindi Fry [India] -- Tangy crispy fried okra (shown right.)
As you can see at right, the okradisappearedd rather quickly...but truthfully - everything did! Yum!
We moved on to have Aloo Gobi [India] --Diced cauliflower & potatoes tempered with turmeric & cumin, Goong Ob Woon Sen [Thailand] -- Shrimp with glass noodles (although we asked them to substitute chicken for the shrimp and they gladly did), Bo Luc Lac [Vietnam] -- (Shaking) beef with garlic sauce and Curry Ayam [Malaysia] -- Chicken in kaffir lime leaf curry. What a feast!!
We also enjoyed tasting their Mango Martinis and Cilantro Mojito.
Foods from so many of my favorite cuisines! How well do they know me or WHAT!?
We ended with a surprise portion of Chocolate Dynamite Cake -- Rich chocolate cake with a layer of dark chocolate fudge, for the table to share after I blew out the candles!
It's the ideal place for those nights where you can't choose between Indian and Vietnamese!
Monday, August 14, 2006
We were up early, packed, breakfasted and off for a spin around the island. We rode out to the Dock Yard at the far end of the island and stopped on the way back for lunch and a dip in a small and quiet cove. It was perfect!!
Then, after a shower at the hotel (even though we'd checked out, they had a shower we could use just off the main office so we didn't have to fly home sandy! A great service from the hotel for sure!!)
The flight home was smooth sailing, although they did search every persons hand luggage for liquids etc. before letting us board. Not that I can blame them, but it was quite an accomplishment considering that we only left 30 minutes late!
Now... it's back to work tomorrow and off to China Sunday!
Yep - work travel is about to wind up again!! I've worked it out to have almost 5 months home with no major trips (a few quickies to CA & London.) That's the longest I've ever been home without a major trip to Asia in SEVEN YEARS! I can tell it's going to hard to start it up again!
Sunday, August 13, 2006
Those Lazy Hazy Crazy Days of Su-ummer!
The day began with a moped ride to my friends house for brunch. It wasn't raining - so that was good - and we ate out on the deck. Re, as always, layed out quite a yummy spread!! We were introduced to their new neighbors as well as a friend of the neighbors who will be moving to BDA soon. Such nice folks! Really a lovely way to start a Sunday!
THEN THE SUN CAME OUT!! YIPPEE!!!!
We'd already planned to go check out elbow beach whether the sun cam out or NOT! So, we were off and after slathering on the 30SPF we were playing on the pink sands and splashing in the waves of the very blue ocean. Ahhhhhhhhh! I liked the sign on the beach. I don't know if i've ever had to watch out for Man of War before...
'Twas a wonderful day.
We ended our days beach fun with an early dinner at Mickey's on the beach. It was packed in no time with a line down the walk, so it was lucky we'd come early.
Apparently it washes away in a storm nearly every year and they rebuild it again for the tourist season (so it must make some money!)
We were treated to both a lovely glass of Sancere and a delicious sunset over the water.
After a lovely day we settled in for the night and were glued to the TV! For those of you who know me you know I hardly watch TV. I don't even have cable. That darn show, Design Star, on HGTV sucked us right in and we watched the 3 episodes that they played back to back. Now Dan's going to have to Tivo this darn show! Tomorrow's our last day!
Thankfully the flight home doesn't leave until 5pm so we've got the bulk of the day ahead of us!
Saturday, August 12, 2006
Day two: Weekend BDA
We have both been burning the candle so much that we really enjoyed sleeping in and leisurely waking up today! What a nice treat! No one expected us anywhere for anything at any time! Perfect!!!
We walked into Hamilton from our hotel (The Royal Palms) and did a bit of a walk about to find a spot for lunch. We decided upon a bit a of a dive on the second floor over a long row of stores. Yummy lamb!!! Next we swung by a shoe store so I could buy some close-toed shoes and from there we journeyed over to rent a moped. Weeeeeeee! There are no cars for rent on the island - so your transportation choices are local bus (slow), moped, ferry (limited) or taxi (very $$!)
After we visited my friends' store, Makin' Waves, (and getting in a wee spot of shpping) we had a quick cuppa and a snack while a heavy rain storm passed overhead.
Next we drove over and visited the Bermuda Botanic Garden. A lovely spot to walk around -- many folks apparently walk there dogs there. They had some wonderful trees! We searched high and low (with the help of their map) for the native plants garden but never did find it.
Upon hopping on the bike to return to hotel, the skys opened up and we got completely soaked!! You can't tell in this photo -- but we are drenched (and having a blast as you can see!!)
We took our time to change and walked across to have dinner at Ascots, the restaurant at our hotel (and one of the best on the island!) YUM!!! I'll pop back in here at a later time to add the wines we had -- Dan's getting me the names.
The food was very good, as was the staff who didn't rush us at all... in fact, we closed the place!
Do check it out if you are visiting Bermuda!
Tomorrow's another day!! Weeeeeeeeeeee!
Friday, August 11, 2006
Friday - We're OFF
I joined Dan at his office this morning on our way to the airport for our trip. Firstly we both had some work to wrap up (and I was able to use a computer in his office) and secondly, we both wanted to get a good look at Baby... the Titan Arum (known as the corpse flower) that was blooming at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. In fact, it reached peek bloom earlier that morning. Seeing it bloom is somewhat of a rare site...the last one to bloom in NYC was in 1939!! Surprisingly the smell wasn't too bad (smelled to me like a cross between earth/soil and soap.)
There were two gals from BBG standing with scent-catching machines pointed down into the plant for hours.
Apparently a Japanese perfume company wanted a sample of this rare flowers scent!
For a time lapse video of it blooming click here.
A neat video indeed.
Interestingly enough, there is one set to bloom in NH in the next week or so! So keep your eyes peeled for info if you're in NH!(I'll try to keep you posted too!)
From there we dashed to the airport. After the new restrictions for not carrying liquids we had heard that the lines at check-in were lengthy so we allowed a little extra time. Upon arrival at the airport, we were checked in and through security in 15 minutes with plenty of time to have a leisurely lunch and a fiesty round of Rummy (which I won by a nose!!!)
Dashed over to our gate (located in a temporary building that we accessed via a shuttle bus.) Our flight ended up being delayed... 3 hours. Thankfully everyone on the flight seemed to take it in stride.
We arrived in one piece and were able to shower, change and still meet friends for a late dinner. It was SO GREAT to see my old friends, and we were so wrapped up in the conversation, that I forgot to take the camera out!!!
All-in-all it was a great day. Lots of laughs were had and I had the best company a girl could ask for!
Thursday, August 10, 2006
Birthday Day - Weeeee!
What a lovely birthday! Dan told me yesterday of the plan for the weekend -- Bermuda baby!! Woo-whoo!! I've been trying to track down my friends that live there to make sure we get a visit in!!!
My office brought in this cake (YUM!) and gave me a very funny card! My coworker presented me with a GC to Jamba Juice to feed my daily Protein Berry Pizzazz addiction. Thanks Ramona!
After working late, my dear BF took me out for a wonderful dinner at Thomas Beisl, a German restaurant in Brooklyn near BAM. I'm surprisingly NOT well versed in Viennese food...so this was a meal that added to my knowledge. Everything was YUMMY!! Thanks Dan!!!
I brought my packed bag along --
tomorrow we're off to Bermuda and I'm ready!!
Wednesday, August 09, 2006
BEWARE: KNITTING CONTENT
Yes - although I haven't mentioned it much as of late - my needles have been click click clicking away. Exhibit left...Jaywalker - the left sock. I shape my socks to fit my wee little feet. :) I'm almost to the ankle on the right sock. :)
I'll work on it on the beach this weekend. :)
Last night Dan and I went for dinner to Franny's. Yum! If you're in Brooklyn, near 7th Avenue -- go check it out! I love their little quiet garden in the back! They have a very interesting wine list -- even wine's by the glass. We shared a wonderful squid salad and a provolone and roasted onion pizza -- they make such good food!!! They were just in the New York Magazine's Top 101 Cheap Eats for NYC! They were ranked as #4 in the 5 star section -- Congrats to Franny's!!!
Today my PR ladies stopped in for a review of the new line and brought these...YUM!!
They are from the Sugar Sweet Sunshine bakery down on Rivington. Yum! The Red velvet ones were yummy...there was a bakers dozen...but I didn't get to camera fast enough!
It's going to be a long night here -- a new customer tomorrow -- could be a good one -- it'll be the first meeting of many!
Keep those fingers crossed!
Tuesday, August 08, 2006
Birthday Break Booked
Yeah! Dan just called to tell me where we're going this weekend!!!!
BERMUDA BABY!!! Wooo-Whooooo!!!!
He knows that although i've been there before, that I adore it and that it would be a close spot to hit for a quick getaway...and he's never been so I'll get to show him my favorite spots! Yippee!!! We leave Friday midday and return Monday evening.
This photo is one that I took on my last visit there...almost 2 years ago now - Wow! Too long!
Hopefully we'll get to sit with my friends there for a meal! It would be great to catch up with them!
Thank you thank you thank you!!!
Monday, August 07, 2006
Yeah! Dan came back on the red-eye this morning from the west coast after a few nice days away camping with M and family/friends. Perhaps next year if it doesn't conflict with my launch I'll journey out there with them! M's now spending time liekly with Grandma then home to settle in to her new house.
Darn it was quiet this weekend with neither Dan nor M around!! Too quiet!
Yoday, after a long day at work, we met up for a nice relaxing dinner at 107 West. So nice!!
And... he told me that he's going to take me out of the city this weekend for my birthday. That's all I know! No details -- but I love a surprise! Yippee! Fun fun fun!
Sunday, August 06, 2006
Eating alone in a restaurant is always interesting. The first group of people, comprising say...half of the people there, look at you with this "poor thing" look as though it's the worst possible ending to be seated ALONE, IN PUBLIC, eating! I think they almost uniformly think I've been stood up!
The next group look on with this curiosity...many in this group are children who visibly wonder why I'm there alone? Sometimes they even ask where my date is. When I tell them I'm simply eating alone they search their minds for a good reason WHY I'd want to do this?? Today it's because everyone I know is busy and I REALLY wanted a duck enchiladas from Mama Mexico's. YUM!!
The final group is small. These are the people who either wish they were there alone or have eaten alone and see the looks being passed.
If you visit Mama's - don't pass up the frozen Margaritas! Today I had to substitute my Pomegranite for Mango...they had run out!
After the meal I met up with Jo and we saw Little Miss Sunshine. Loved it! Damn it's funny! Go see it!! I'll likely go see it again with Dan. Really -- very good!!
After the film we headed back to Jo and Emanuel's for a nice salad and some great cheese followed by some Godiva vanilla ice cream with those caramel filled hearts! Yummmy!! (Do you notice the ongoing "yumminess" theme in my blog entries?)
It was after this tasty food that Emanuel decided to show me his thrift store finds from the weekend. A great haul -- a beautiful black tuxedo -- a perfectly mint black pinstriped Brooks Brother's suit -- and this jacket that I've named the Swell jacket. Man does he ever LOVE this jacket!!! Wow-wee! See the smile on his face? How could it not make you happy?
Dan comes back tomorrow! Yeah!!! Ohh - and it's birthday week! Yippee!
Saturday, August 05, 2006
OLD FRIENDS and OLE FRIENDS
Saturday was gals lunch! My dear friend DeJay (shown right) cruised down from Connecticut and we enjoyed a champagne lunch at Henry's...well, rather a full-bottle of Prosecco... and some crab cakes and salad and OF COURSE Henry's addictive fries that they serve in the paper cone... followed by some fruitful shopping!
A presto-chango shower and get ready moment and I was off to Sandi's 40th birthday party!
This is Sandi (and her brother George) on the left...there is NO WAY she looks 40! You GO GIRL!!
It was really nice to see Sandi and Roger and Michelle and to meet George!
Friday, August 04, 2006
This is it!
7 months of work all boiled down to the launch today of my Spring/Summer 2007 line of ladies accessories!
Many hats with some bags to coordinate!
Folks flew in from across the US and Canada and before I knew it, as always, it was over. Thankfully it was well received and a sense of excitement fell over everyone.
Now it's time for them to sell sell sell!!
...and it's time for me to dive further into the development of the NEXT LINE for Autumn/Winter 2007!! Yeeowza! And people wonder why I've already started dating my checks for 2007! It's a hard habit to break!
After the meeting, we all piled onto a yellow school bus (efficient way to move 20 some odd people at once!) and drove uptown to Casa La Femme North for Egyptian food and some belly dancing! At one point there were 3 drink options...so I did what any red-blodded girl would do and tried them all!
Yes, there I am shakin' it with the belly dancer! The photo to teh right is my boss, also shakin' it with the belly dancer!
Fun was had by all!!! Hmmm...now to figure out where we'll go after the next launch! It's only 5 months away in January! Phew!
Thursday, August 03, 2006
The Last Day
Today was M's last day here. Tonight Dan will fly with her out west for a few days of camping with family. Unfortunately I have to work and have to miss the fun!
So what'd we do today aside from packing?
Pinhole Camera Fun!!!
I know this one is also in the loop above, but I love her concentration -- it deserves its own close-up! Above you'll see M figuring out where to set the camera for the shot, Dan helping her check her choice, the timing of the shot, and a photo of M when she jumped intot he shot hoping to get a ghost of herself on the film.
I can tell that there will be many more days of pinhole fun ahead!
Tomorrow's a big day!
I'll launch my newest line (Spring/Summer 2007!!)
Keep those fingers crossed!!
Safe flight to Dan and M -- they should be somewhere over middle America right now!